Panamax has introduced a pro-level power management product (M4315-PRO) featuring BlueBOLT® IP control technology. The M4315-PRO provides custom electronics installers and integrators a web-based power management interface that allows control of any or all of the eight individual outlets using any Web browser or Web-enabled mobile device. This can dramatically reduce service calls and wasted travel time thanks to the remote access capability. Panamax also offers a 20A version (M4320-PRO) of the unit for those needing higher current capability and features two 20 amp outlets on the back. The M4315-PRO and M4320-PRO are available now, at MSRPs of $649.95 and $799.95, respectively.
The unit has integrated rack ears and a detachable 15A IEC power cord for easy installation. The unit includes a detachable 10-foot heavy duty power cord, RS232 card (in addition to the installed BlueBOLT-CV1), a set of 4 front rack mount screws, and rubber feet. The 1-RU (height) M4315-PRO is designed to fit into a standard 19-inch rack and has a depth of about 13-inches. Four outlet banks (8 individual rear panel outlets) feature linear noise (EMI and RFI) filtration for enhanced audio and video system performance.
The front of the M4315-PRO has indicator lights that provide status for each of the eight outlets on the back. These lights flash when the outlet is about to turn on and stays lit once activated. The REBOOT 1 & 2 buttons are used to initiate a “reboot” sequence
of outlet 1 or 2.
Pressing both REBOOT simultaneously for 2 seconds will initiate a full power-up or
shut down sequence. The 15 amp circuit breaker on the front panel is the master power breaker for all outlets. The front panel outlet is always on, unless the circuit
breaker is set to OFF. Real-time voltage or current can be displayed along with the four red indicators that provide fault conditions (Unsafe Voltage, Breaker, Wiring Fault, or Temperature). The VOLT/AMP BRIGHTNESS knob is used to adjust the brightness level of the display from full brightness to off. Pressing the knob toggles the meter
between the VOLTS and AMPS mode on the large, easy to read display.
The four preset power on/off profiles can be changed using the REBOOT buttons with the circuit breaker off. Simply press the REBOOT 1 & 2 simultaneously for 8
seconds and the meter will show the current P1-P4 (presets) or PP (personal) profile. The “personal
profile” is a configuration that can be changed
from the presets by external control through the communication card.
Pull Out Card
Located just below the REBOOT buttons is a quick reference pull out card
for default profile times for power on/off.
In the Lab
The M4315-PRO protects connected electronics from unsafe voltages by cutting off utility power to them. Our lab tests revealed that the unit shuts off if the voltage reaches about 136VAC and does not re-establish power until the voltage drops down to around 131VAC. This built-in hysteresis prevents the unit from oscillating on and off if the voltage is fluctuating near the trip point. Like-wise, the unit turns off power if the voltage drops to around 100VAC and does not restore power until the line voltage goes up to about 105VAC for the same reason mentioned above.
The Panamax M4315-PRO is built around a solid chassis design and weighs just over 12 pounds. There are four separate linear filtered outlet banks. All power is routed using heavy 12 gauge wire minimizing voltage (IR) drops. Each bank shares a common neutral line back to the filter board. There are a total of ten (30 amp) relays in the M4315-PRO with a dedicated relay for each outlet. This allows the unit to independently control the outlets for power-on and power-off sequencing along with individual on/off control. Common mode chokes can be seen on the input power and output banks 1, 2, and 3. A small switching power supply module is located near the front of the large filter board to run the internal electronics.
The display board has a small processor module attached to it for handling data in the unit. This includes processing the user interface commands, real-time voltage and current telemetry, communications with the plug-in module (RS232 or ethernet) on the back, and full relay controls for the outlets.
The rear panel of the M4315-PRO has a total of eight outlets, each of which can be switched individually. The timing of the sequence is determined by the profiles (preset or personal). The outlets are tightly spaced, so any use of wall warts will cause major clutter in the outlet array. The modular card slot allows for either the RS232 card or the BlueBOLT® CV1 ethernet card, both of which come with the unit. Two sets of F-connectors provide protection for dual satellite or cable/antenna connections. There is also protection provided for phone and ethernet interfaces. Banks 1 through 3 provide filtered power for outlets 1 through 6. Bank 4 (outlets 7 & 8) provides high current capability for powered subwoofers, amplifiers and A/V receivers. A large grounding lug is available and should be tied to earth ground if possible. The M4315-PRO has a DC trigger input that can be connected to a receiver or processor to enable/disable the unit.
The BlueBOLT™ IP Communications Card (Model: BlueBOLT-CV1) comes pre-installed in the unit and is designed to connect to the internet directly through
a switch or router. Since the interface is hosted by Panamax, you only need to set
it once. All devices are controlled through an easy-to-use interface at
www.mybluebolt.com with no static
IP addresses required. Once installed and configured, users will be able to access telemetry, control of individual
outlets, and configure email alerts. The Remote Power
Management technology provides secure, hosted IP (Internet Protocol)
system control. BlueBOLT™ allows custom electronics installers,
integrators and end-users to access several power management components via
BlueBOLT® enabled devices can be managed through the BlueBOLT® website with each product location customized for easy identification. There is little to configure and the system is designed to find its home server when the user enters the MAC address and challenge key number. Once the product is registered, a picture will appear making it easier
to identify the component being controlled. Since the interface is hosted
at the BlueBOLT® website, users can remotely monitor and control
their power equipment from anywhere in the world using a computer or handheld device.
The Device Admin tab provides the user with the option to change
the device name, delete the device or request the device
firmware and IP information. The latter option initiates a request
from the BlueBOLT® server
and results in a display of the physical IP address, product name and
the IP firmware of the unit. This is a powerful feature that lets installers or end users control
their M4315-PRO from remote locations. Firmware updates are also easy to perform with a simple click of a button. Our unit showed a more recent update available, so we initiated this without any problems.
Using the Energy Management tab, users can get statistical data on their power unit. Data collected from the M4315-PRO is logged and can be accessed through the BlueBOLT® software. Power (in Watts), Voltage and Current can be displayed over time periods of a day, week, or month. This will give users good feedback on their power usage. Information on energy used (Today and Month-to-Date) are displayed. Users can set up an energy budget and the display shows the Energy Consumption over Budget ratio.
The Device Controls tab provides the user with both input voltage and output current readings displayed as an analog meter and digital readout. Each of the outlets on the rear panel
can be controlled remotely (via the internet) using the built-in relays. The green power buttons
are used to turn the outlets ON or OFF. The blue buttons perform a power cycle
on the outlet. The Edit Outlet Setting button allows the user
to name the outlet for convenience.
One of the great features offered with the BlueBOLT® system is that it can notify
users by email if the M4315-PRO runs into any issues while operating. Email
addresses and event alerts are set using the Event Alert Settings menu. The following events can be individually enabled or disabled. Under-Voltage, Over-Voltage, Power Normal, Power Recovery, Breaker Switched Off, Breaker Switched On, and Connection Lost. Another nice feature is BlueBOLT® can be programmed to automatically reboot outlets when an Internet connection is lost, automating the need to reboot a router or modem. Since the BlueBOLT™
server can detect a loss of connection, it can directly send the email
frequency of alerts can be set to 5 minutes, 15 minutes, 30 minutes, 60
minutes, or 24 hours.
Users can monitor their power usage on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis to determine trends in their power consumption habits. Outlets can be programmed individually to turn on and off at specific times on specific days saving overall power when components do not need to be on 24/7. Some components use significant power even when sitting idle, so this can be a real benefit.
The M4315-PRO performed as described with powerful remote access capabilities via the internet. The four separate linear filtered outlet banks provide protection from noise and transient surges to protect connected equipment. Chokes on Bank 1, 2, and 3 provides an extra level of common mode noise rejection. This can improve both audio and video performance by not allowing dirty power into your electronics.
The Panamax M4315-PRO (MSRP: $649.95) is a solid product with excellent build quality. The front panel provides essential features one would expect in a high-end power conditioner. This full featured power conditioner provides flexible outlet control in a single 1U rack mount design. Outlet spacing does not easily accommodate non-standard power cords, so using AC power adapters may be difficult. If you care about your A/V equipment and want your investment protected from what comes from your utility company, the M4315-PRO deserves a closer look.